Lough trying to raise his game

BOSTON - With left-hander Felix Doubront on the mound for the Red Sox this afternoon, there's a good chance that David Lough will begin the game on the bench.

The Orioles are more likely to put Nelson Cruz or Delmon Young in left field, which would put Lough on the list of reserves.

Lough wasn't in last night's lineup, though the Red Sox started right-hander John Lackey. Manager Buck Showalter went with the hotter hand of Young.

Lough is 4-for-32 in 11 games, with a triple, two RBIs, two walks and two stolen bases. He's feeling a little better at the plate and a lot better physically after experiencing the same symptoms that caused the Orioles to shut him down in spring training.

The Orioles sent Lough for a concussion test while the team was in New York and it came back clean. The dizziness and eye floaters gradually have subsided.

"I've been feeling fine," he said yesterday while sitting at his locker inside the cramped visitors clubhouse at Fenway Park - a room so small you have to step outside to change your mind.

"Obviously, struggling a little bit at the plate, which I know will come eventually. I'm starting to feel a lot better. I was dealing with the symptoms that were coming back and I was kind of playing through those a little bit and just grinding through this whole process. I'm trying to get it past me. And I know what type of hitter I am and what I'm capable of doing.

"I think my defense has been there. I think I've played pretty good defense, and I think my offense will pick up here shortly. I'm starting to feel more comfortable at the plate, and having all these symptoms and stuff kind of disappear now, so that's good.

"When I got checked out, I had that one game-winner that night. Ever since, I think it's kind of been going down little by little and I think it's gone now. And I'm looking to just try to get over it and move on from it."

Lough, who replaced Young in left field in the bottom of the seventh inning last night and recorded the Orioles' seventh outfield assist, is hesitant to blame his slump on his symptoms.

"I'm not linking that to it," he said. "I'm thinking about my at-bats my last game. I got into good counts, got into 3-2 counts. Chased balls where I would have walked. (Jake) Odorizzi technically walked me twice and I let him go off the leash. And then I swung at a changeup down and popped it up. And he made a really good pitch on me, that one other at-bat, but I feel like I'm getting in good counts.

"When you're going bad sometimes, you feel like you're going to the plate already 0-2, but I'm still just trying to be patient, trying to get comfortable and draw more walks and look for my pitch to hit. That's what I'm looking for.

"It's a process, especially when you're in a slump. You feel like things are going bad all the time. When you're up there, they won't throw you a fastball for a strike, but then they throw you a slider or a curveball for a strike. Paint the corner and you're like, 'What am I supposed to do with that pitch?' Hopefully, the tide's turned a little bit and will start going in my favor soon. But I feel fine at the plate for the most part."

blog comments powered by Disqus